Mortgage Who's Who

Loan officers (also referred to as Mortgage Loan Officers, Loan Originators,and other similar titles) collect, review and evaluate the credit, financial and employment information of potential borrowers to determine if they qualify for a mortgage, and provide various financing options available. The mortgage application process is begun with loan officers and they then keep track of the status during the loan approval process.

Real estate agents (Realtors® are real estate professionals who are members of the National Association of Realtors) assist homebuyers in the process of finding homes that meet their specific needs including the neighborhood, design, features, school district and and price. Buyer’s agents represent the homebuyer (vs. a listing agent, who represents the seller and the seller’s interests) will advise the homebuyer throughout the home buying experience and will handle negotiations with the seller.

Loan processors prepare the borrower’s mortgage loan information and application for mortgage underwriting. They ensure all proper documentation required for the specific loan program being applied for are included.  Additionally the loan processor checks that all numbers are calculated correctly and that everything is in order to ensure a timely underwriting approval and closing.

Mortgage underwriters assess whether a borrower and the selected property is eligible for the applied loan program.  Their decision is based on the borrower’s credit history, employment history, assets, debts and other factors in addition to the property’s value and other characteristics.

Real estate appraisers evaluate the property being purchasing to determine how much it is worth.

Home inspectors examine the condition of the home being purchased.  They produce a report for the homebuyer to ensure the buyer is aware of concerning safety issues as well as items requiring repairs or maintenance

Closing representatives (sometimes this role is filled by an attorney, title company, or escrow agent) oversee the settlement, closing or close of escrow of a mortgage loan.  They handle recording the signed legal documents involved in the closing and document and disburse the money between the various parties involved in the transaction. 

Mortgage lenders are the financial institutions that originate, process, underwrite and fund mortgage loans.

Mortgage servicers are the financial institutions or entities that are responsible for communicating with borrowers after a mortgage loan closes regarding mortgage accounts.  The servicer of a mortgage may or may not be the institution that originated and initially closed the mortgage loan.  They handle all aspects of the loan after it is closed,  including the collection of monthly mortgage payments, maintaining escrow account (if applicable), etc. You will be notified if your mortgage servicer ever changes.

Mortgage investors purchase home loans that mortgage lenders originate.  These investors often package a lot of  loans into mortgage securities that are sold in global capital markets, which allows mortgage lenders to make more mortgages and keep the cycle going. This creates liquidity needed to always lend to new homebuyers. Examples of Mortgage Investors include Fannie Mac and Freddie Mac, among others.